Gather Us Up and Bring Us Home
by Shasta Grant
publication date: June 30, 2017
Runner-up in the 2015 Turnbuckle Chapbook Contest, selected by Sara Lippmann
Gather Us Up and Bring Us Home, a collection of flash fiction, explores the lives of small-town girls, of men and women stuck in time and place. A ten-year-old girl finds Jesus at the county fair; a used-car salesman dreams of leaving town the night of his ten-year reunion; a group of girls learn the extent of their power and cruelty at a sleepover. The characters in these stories are alive with restlessness and nostalgia, longing for different lives, for the lovers and mothers that left them behind.
Praise for Gather Us Up and Bring Us Home:
"Shasta Grant extends a hand to a reader, drawing us into the private worlds of poolside mothers, sleepover girls, men left behind…her gimlet eye, knack for precision and crisp, clear voice will stay with you long after you finish reading."
—Sara Lippmann, author of LECH
"A delightful collection full of swimming pools, sports, high schools, motherhood and girlhood. She’s gifting us little nostalgia-tinted stories of sticky, awkward young love, friendships and hunger."
—Leesa Cross-Smith, author of Half-Blown Rose and Whiskey & Ribbons
"The outliers and misfits of a small town stuck in time. This is accomplished and unforgettable storytelling by a master of the flash fiction form."
—Kathy Fish, author of Wild Life: Collected Works from 2003-2018
"A collection of characters equal parts begging and refusing to be gathered up, aching to be both brought home but also to escape. The beauty in these stories is their ability to capture both the magic and the trick of nostalgia, the optimism and pessimism both."
—Aaron Burch, author of The Year of the Buffalo
Shasta Grant is a writer and editor based in Indianapolis. Her stories and essays have appeared in cream city review, Epiphany, Heavy Feather Review, wigleaf, and elsewhere. She won the 2015 Kenyon Review Short Fiction Contest, selected by Ann Patchett. She was selected as a 2020 Aspen Words Emerging Writer Fellow and the 2016 SmokeLong Quarterly Kathy Fish Fellow. She has received residencies from Hedgebrook and The Kerouac House. She holds an MFA in Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and is the Coordinating Editor at SmokeLong Quarterly.